Here is an example of how, specifically, to practice the skill of outlining and summarizing to take notes from your text.
The goal of these notes is to make your preparation for class more efficient, as well as to help you manage the information you will encounter in college level textbooks, which are not divided into lessons and which do not usually provided vocabulary or terms lists. As you manipulate the information in the chapter, you will also begin to comprehend cause and effect relationships and move to a deeper level of thinking about the material. Finally, these notes are usually much shorter than the “mini-books” some of you have been compiling on your own.
Remember, the procedure is:
1. Skim the text– before you read it. Note subheadings, graphs, charts, and pictures, connecting to what you already know.
2. Reduce and summarize the information into no more than 3-5 main topics, optimally. Organize the subcategories in a logical format once you have brainstormed them.
3. Try to write your main topics as questions or prompts.
4. Organize the information under the appropriate sub-category. Think of each main topic as basically setting out the information for an Free Response Question essay, or FRQ.
5. Make sure you emphasize causal relationships and reasons for significance. REMEMBER TO INCLUDE DATES, AND THE IMPORTANT ACTORS IN EACH EVENT!
Chapter 10 outline
I—What problems did the first federal government face?
Individual rights and the Bill of Rights
Taxes and Whiskey Rebellion
Hamilton-Jefferson feud and the development of factions
II.—How did Washington’s regime establish several precedents?
Bill of Rights
Department of State
Department of War
Department of Treasury
Warnings about political parties
III.—How and why did Adams’ Presidency differ from Washington’s?
Undeclared war with France
Alien and Sedition Acts
Convention of 1800
Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions
Parties become permanent parts of the political landscape- why?